July 28, 2009
Volunteers to build city's first special-needs-accessible playground
UPDATE: Have some time this weekend? Help build the new Lockwood Park playground. Work starts on Saturday at 8 a.m. and runs through 6 p.m. It'll start up again on Sunday at 10 a.m. and continue until 4 p.m. Volunteers are encouraged to bring work gloves and protective eyewear. Drinks will be provided both days and lunch will be provided on Saturday.
Questions? Contact Alderman Aron Wisneski at: firstname.lastname@example.org
ORIGINAL POST: The city's first playground designed for children with special needs will be built in Lockwood Park in August.
The new playground will include wheelchair-accessible ramps to playsets for toddlers and older children. It will also have a poured-in-place rubberized surface that's both soft and firm. The blue surface will be poured after the playground is built and will provide a padded landing in case children fall, but also a firm surface for wheelchairs to cross.
Alderman Aron Wisneski has worked on getting the playground for over a year. He and his wife are now recruiting volunteers to help build the playground on Saturday, Aug. 15.
Wisneski said the playground is accessible to all people. For example, elderly or disabled residents who may be wary about six or seven steps to reach a playset with their grandchildren will be able to walk up the ramps. The same goes for the rubberized surface. Most playground use wood chips or sand as a base, which is nearly impossible for someone in a wheelchair to cross.
"It's more accessible for everyone," Wisneski said.
The City Council agreed to spend $63,230 on the playground, which came with a matching grant from the equipment manufacturer.
The Kiwanis Club of West Racine recently donated $360.75 to the city to purchase a "Zero-G chair" (a hanging swing with harnesses) for the new playground. The Finance and Personnel Committee approved the donation Monday night.
If you're interested in volunteering to build the new Lockwood Park playground, contact Alderman Aron Wisneski at: email@example.com